- Tonghui River in Beijing
Today I've reached the mysterious source,or perhaps this is the river's end. Dark,silent, it's unaware of me.I see it, or perhaps it sees and observes me.Deep in the winter, someone like me,having experienced spring,looks at the river too early in the season
The river travels on and on,—just as I've walked such a long way—never tiring.This is only a portion of it, extendingon its solitary course without me,unreeling like a spider's filamenthard working, ceaselessly moving,unable to turn back on itself.There must be some destination to reach.I look back, and it's as if the road I've takenis turning its back on me, and on the riverthat tries to carry me with it. Who takes whom?The desire to possess is uncontrollable.The river bends, free from all desires. [End Page 139]
Qing Ping has published two books of poetry and edited the prestigious Blue Stars Poetry Series and the bilingual anthology Push Open the Window: Contemporary Poetry from China. He has worked at the People's Literature Publishing House since 1983.
Ming Di is a Chinese poet, translator, and editor based in the U.S. She has published six books of poetry in Chinese, plus a collaborative translation, River Merchant's Wife. With Neil Aitken, she cotranslated Zang Di's The Book of Cranes, and with Jennifer Stern, Liu Xia's Empty Chairs: Selected Poems, a finalist for the 2016 Best Translated Book Award. She edited and cotranslated New Cathay: Contemporary Chinese Poetry and New Poetry from China 1917–2017. A recipient of Henry Luce Foundation fellowships, she is a cofounder of Poetry East West journal and the China editor for Poetry International Rotterdam.
Frank Stewart is a poet, translator, and editor who has published four books of poetry and a book of nonfiction. His edited books include The Poem Behind the Poem: Translating Asian Poetry. His translations with Michelle Yeh are included in Hawk of the Mind: Collected Poems of Yang Mu; he has also translated I, Snow Leopard by Jidi Majia. His honors include a Whiting Award and the Hawai'i Award for Literature.